The Community Effect (part 2)
Creating a Differentiated
Customer Experience
The Science of Enabling a Successful Customer ...
Why Community – and Why Now?
As explored in the first paper in this series, “The Com-
munity Effect: Becoming a Customer E...
The Science of Community
Launching a community does not automatically make
your business a customer experience leader. A c...
Based on this analysis, they can employ lots of lesser well-
known approaches for creating multiple doors to their
Be Where Your Customers Are
Consumers have been leading the way when it comes to
adopting new social channels. However, ac...
But providing a mobile customer experience is no longer
solely about offering a mobile app. It requires that you op-
Ideally, your community will be constantly growing and
changing, so it needs careful oversight. Your community
manager nee...
asset at hand and create even more value. Posting this
material in your community also gives it an SEO boost.
We recommend...
•	Search trends: This metric allows you to identify
top search terms from within your community
(versus from the web) to u...
•	Reach out to them with questions to encourage
engagement between customers. Guidance from a
community manager can unlock...
•	Faster and more targeted product innovation – by
using the community to beta test products, solicit
real-time feedbac...
Providing an outstanding customer experience is really just about prioritizing the customer at each step of
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The Community Effect: The Science of Successful Community Management


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Companies that embrace community benefit from a company-wide transformation as departments align around customer needs, priorities, and concerns. We call this the Community Effect, and you can achieve it, too. The second in three-part series, this practical guide will cover the patterns, tactics, and best practices necessary to achieve the Community Effect.

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Transcript of "The Community Effect: The Science of Successful Community Management"

  1. 1. The Community Effect (part 2) Creating a Differentiated Customer Experience The Science of Enabling a Successful Customer Community This paper is the second in a series on the ART, SCIENCE, and TOOLS that enable com- panies to realize the “Community Effect.” Get Satisfaction has been on the forefront of community management and technology development for six years. We know communi- ties better than anyone – and offer a unique perspective on the future and strategic value of communities. About Get Satisfaction Get Satisfaction helps customer-centric organizations engage millions of consumers in meaningful conversations about their products and services every day. The Get Satisfaction community platform transforms these conversations into powerful, user-generated market- ing content and insights, enabling businesses to create differentiated customer experiences, acquire more customers and bring new innovations to market. Headquartered in San Francisco, Get Satisfaction has customers around the world, including Citrix, HootSuite, Intuit and Kellogg’s. Table of Contents ¢¢ Why Community – and Why Now?. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 ¢¢ The Science of Community. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 ¢¢ Market Your Community by Building Connections Wherever Your Customers Are. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 ¢¢ Make Your Community a Content Powerhouse that Keeps People Coming Back. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 ¢¢ Monitor, Track and Analyze Your Community. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8 ¢¢ Create a Customer-centered Business. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 ¢¢ Are You Ready?. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 ¢¢ Conclusion. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
  2. 2. Why Community – and Why Now? As explored in the first paper in this series, “The Com- munity Effect: Becoming a Customer Experience Leader,” the benefits of customer community go far beyond reduc- ing support costs and generating SEO-friendly market- ing content. Get Satisfaction customers who actively embrace their customer community observe a company- wide transformation. We refer to it as the Community Ef- fect. It happens naturally when you harness the power of customer conversations and elevate them to their rightful place — the heart of your business. When you have a strong Community Effect: • Customer conversations raise the level of accountability that departments and even individual employees have regarding the quality of the customer experience. • Departments start to work together to address customer issues, questions, and ideas raised in the community. • Employees are in regular communication, allowing them to move beyond bureaucracies, policies, and inflexible processes that hinder collaboration and innovation to take action. • Everyone – companywide – is on board with what customers are saying and asking for, and your customers feel heard, important, and proud to be a loyal customer and advocate. In other words, your business becomes more customer- centric and better equipped to deliver an outstanding customer experience. The business performance of companies that successfully differentiate their customer experience speak for themselves; an analysis done by Watermark Consulting of the six-year stock performance of customer experience leaders compared with laggards and the S&P 500 (2007 – 2012) shows that customer experience leaders significantly outperform the market (see Figure 1). Figure 1: Customer experience leaders outperform the market. Achieving the Community Effect requires the right combination of ART, SCIENCE, and TOOLS. This paper focuses on the science of community – the technical aspects and best practices that enable your community site to work optimally for you and your customers so it delivers mutual value quickly. Part of a Three-Part Series on the Art, Sci- ence and Tools of Community This paper complements our first paper in the series, titled “The Art of Community,” which answers the question, “How do you organize internal processes and prepare your people to make your customer community a success?” It also discusses the human and organiza- tional aspects of community success and touches on some of the practical to-do’s as you prepare for your community’s launch. The series will conclude with a series of case studies that highlight “The Tools of Community.” In it, we’ll share practical examples of how Get Satisfaction customers are cultivating and unleashing the Community Effect to create a customer-centered culture that enables excep- tional customer experiences and differentiates their business. 2
  3. 3. The Science of Community Launching a community does not automatically make your business a customer experience leader. A communi- ty is a vital catalyst for companies seeking to achieve this goal – but to maximize the Community Effect, it needs to be set up, moderated, and curated according to specific best practices. We call this the science of community. In our experience, it’s not enough to take a “build it and they will come” attitude. You have to invite customers into your community, systematically integrate it into the everyday customer experience, and reward them with dynamic, highly-relevant content that is carefully culti- vated, repurposed, preserved, and discoverable. In addition, you must apply a data-driven, analytical approach to understanding your community so that you can proactively grow engagement, manage participation, assess the effectiveness of your content, and gauge impact on customers. Analytics are essential to understanding what’s working, what’s not, and why, so you can system- atically optimize your community. These are just a few examples of what’s involved in the science of community. Investing in a community and failing to apply these recommendations and best prac- tices is akin to buying a smartphone and just using it to make calls. You’re leaving so much potential value on the table. To get the most from a smartphone, you need to connect it to the Internet; set up your email, voicemail, and calendar; deploy apps; monitor and respond to incoming calls and text messages, and so on. You also need to tell other people how to reach you on your device. In much the same way, customer communities require a certain degree of set-up and optimization to make sure they deliver maximum value. Let’s take a deeper dive into Get Satisfaction’s recom- mendations and best practices, which are based on six years of experience helping customers deploy successful communities. There are two markers of a thriving customer community: engaged people and high-quality content. Market Your Community by Building Connections Wherever Your Customers Are In order for you and your customers to realize maxi- mum value from your community, you need to attract a healthy, engaged population. As a first step, this means announcing your community to the world – for example, by sending a newsletter announcement, writing a blog post, and posting to active social channels. Many busi- nesses write press releases as well. But is this enough to attract the widest possible range of customers to your community? Companies with the most successful communities know otherwise. They take an outside-in perspective, devel- oping a communications plan that takes into account customer preferences and expectations. For example, this may mean asking: • Where are customers and prospects spending most of their time online? What makes them visit our website? • Which channels do we use to interact with customers online currently? How will our community align with these existing channels? • Where do our customers go to find support for our product? Where do they go to get advice? • Where do our prospects go to explore, evaluate, and make purchase decisions? How can our community support the buyer journey? 3
  4. 4. Based on this analysis, they can employ lots of lesser well- known approaches for creating multiple doors to their community. And in our work with customers, we know these strategies work. Here are a few technical tips to get you started on the path to rapid community growth. Turbo-charge Your Website with Community According to Incyte Research (2012), company websites are the preferred destinations for information to support a purchase decision – not social networks. This makes your website a key “door” through which you can invite members to join your community. (See the sidebar, “Where Do Customers Go to Learn More About Prod- ucts?” to learn more.) Where Do Customers Go to Learn More About Products? When Incyte asked nearly 1,900 qualified consumers (all of whom actively use the Internet and represent adults from all age, socio-economic, and geographic groups in the U.S.) to name their primary destinations for researching products or seeking customer service via the Internet, their top choices were: • Visit company website to make a purchase decision — 89.3% • Visit company website for service/support questions — 68.8% • Contact the company via e-mail — 43.5% • Use an Internet community dedicated to the product/service — 27.3% • Use a social network — 21.2% Social networks still have had a major impact on the way that today’s customers expect to communicate with your brand online. Incyte’s findings revealed that consumers don’t want brand interactions cluttering up their social networks. They do, however, want company websites to be more like their experiences on social networks. This way, they get the best of both worlds when researching new products and services: detailed product information from the company and authentic, real-time answers and opinions from other customers. In 2014, engaging websites will be the norm. By integrating your community with your website, you quickly make your website more social by giving cus- tomers access to trustworthy, dynamic content from peers. For example, you can embed your customer community on your homepage, help pages, and product pages. Figure 2 provides an example of how, one of the United Kingdom’s fastest- growing retailers, has complemented its product pages by embedding community content just below the buy button. When you look at this content, note the ques- tions that are most commonly asked about this product within the community. They start rather generic (for instance, “Will this fit in my car?”) and then they get ex- tremely specific (for example, “Will this fit in the middle position in an Audi Q7 2009?”). Similarly, B2B companies have as much (or more) to gain by implementing customer community as part of the purchase experience. For example, Get Satisfaction customer, HP Vertica, offers a database product for big data analytics, a complex and much discussed space in tech circles. Their customer community has become a primary destination for widespread conversations about big data; it’s also a place where their prospects can discover the relative benefits of the Vertica solution over other database products. As more and more of this con- tent has become discoverable through Google searches, Vertica has seen a corresponding increase in inbound marketing traffic and product trials. Whether your business is a B2B or B2C, community is an easy way to meet customer demand for detailed prod- uct information from your company and other custom- ers. And at the same time, your website becomes a new door to your customer community, and vice versa. Figure 2: Place product-specific community conversations next to that item on your eCommerce pages to help shoppers make purchase decisions. 4
  5. 5. Be Where Your Customers Are Consumers have been leading the way when it comes to adopting new social channels. However, according to recent research from Incyte Research, this doesn’t mean that they want to engage with companies and brands through their social networks. The best practice is to in- vite them to connect to your customer community wher- ever they already are – on Google, Facebook, Twitter, and others. You can also post links to relevant community conversations in social channels to improve engagement and acquire more community members. We refer to this strategy as an outside-in approach to capturing community members. It’s not about reinvent- ing the wheel – it’s about channeling current customer interactions back to your community. To simplify this process, choose a community platform that is on top of consumer trends and integrates easily with existing online channels. Get Satisfaction, for example, integrates with Facebook and HootSuite for social media manage- ment and offers widgets that allow you to place commu- nity seamlessly on any web page or even in your applica- tion. This allows you to bring customer conversations to and from social networks, increasing your brand’s visibility among a larger audience. Promoting Community Is a Marketing Campaign We’ve found that the most successful communities have managers who think creatively and outside the box – and provide entry points to your community through other online sources. Here are some ideas to get you started: • Add a link to the footers of all employees’ email signatures. • Promote your community from your other support resources – for example, online tutorials, static FAQs and knowledge bases, bulletin boards, older forums, and more — so you can redirect your customers looking for answers. • Embed community in your online applications and products, so users have an in-app way to identify bugs and share real-time feedback. • Reference your community in print materials and conversations with customers and prospects. They need to know that your community is an official channel. Leverage the Power of Search Engines Because of the long-tail nature of conversations and the preference that search algorithms give to user-generated content, community produces some of the best SEO re- sults. So make sure you’re including keywords in conver- sation titles and tags so they’re easy to search for within your community and by search engines. Your website, blog, resources, and customer community all need to be optimized for the keywords your potential customers are searching for. If not, you’re likely not even making it to the “evaluate” stage of the customer lifecycle. It’s also important to select a community platform that is structured to rank well in search engines like Bing and Google. This is determined by the size of the community platform you choose, the URL structure, and how open the platform is. For example, Get Satisfaction hosts more than 10 million pages that are crawled by search engines several times an hour. This sheer size of the platform makes it a magnet for search. In addition, the customer- generated content actually appears in the URL structure of conversation threads, making it more likely that the content you want will be indexed with keywords similar to those that other customers are searching. Go Mobile Whether customers are in between meetings, on the train, or waiting to pick kids up from school, they are increasingly likely to be browsing the internet and searching for information via cell phones and tablets. So you can’t afford not to implement your community in a mobile-friendly way. 5 Figure 3: Get Satisfaction communities are built with respon- sive design, so they automatically adjust for attractiveness and usablility on any screen size.
  6. 6. But providing a mobile customer experience is no longer solely about offering a mobile app. It requires that you op- timize your browser-based experience for all screen sizes – regardless of the viewer’s device and operating system. For example, to do this, the Get Satisfaction community platform leverages Responsive Design principles — a web design approach that focuses on crafting sites to give users an optimal viewing experience on any size screen. The design enables easy reading and navigation with a minimum of resizing, panning, and scrolling, regardless of device. This is also a much more scalable approach than designing device-specific community apps. By going mobile, you also have the opportunity to capture additional context associated with the content contributed from mobile devices, such as customer location. Make Your Community a Content Powerhouse that Keeps People Coming Back Getting customers to find and join your community is a vital first step to community success. To keep them com- ing back and engaging in real, authentic ways, you need to provide them with an engaging, “sticky” experience. Much of the value of community for your business comes from its ability to generate lots of customer-generated content. This is what helps your community stay fresh and relevant, valuable for customers as a source of trusted information, and a healthy source of customer insight for your business. But our customers will only create content in your community if you’ve established it as place where they find value and meaningful engagement. The following techniques and best practices can help you create a vibrant community for your customers – one where they are motivated to respond to user questions, share product ideas and experiences, write reviews, provide advice, report problems, and offer solutions to problems. The “golden rule” of community is simple: to realize value from your community, you must first provide value to your customers by making it a worthwhile destination for them. Seed Your Community with Quality Content You probably already have an idea of the questions and issues that your support team receives most often. So as you launch your community – and then manage it on an ongoing basis – be sure to post content that addresses these questions. Seed answers to your FAQs right off the bat as conversations, so they’ll be available when your first customers come looking for them. You should also periodically post topics and ask ques- tions of your community that will generate ideas and drive engagement (for example, asking customers for suggestions on future products). You’ll be amazed at the insight your customers have to offer when prompted. You can also tweet community conversations to invite a wide range of responses, without the restriction of character limits. Or send specific community queries directly to champions to build community engagement and owner- ship. Moderate and Curate Content on a Regular Basis 6
  7. 7. Ideally, your community will be constantly growing and changing, so it needs careful oversight. Your community manager needs to tend to your community like a gar- dener – for example, by seeding it with helpful content, weeding out outdated or irrelevant information, and cross-pollinating it with links to and from other places. For instance, when moderating topics, they can merge duplicate content, archive topics that don’t have lasting value to others, close topics that don’t need additional replies, edit topic titles so they’re clear and descriptive, set the status on topics so community members know where they stand, and promote relevant employee replies as the “official company response.” In addition, it’s important to keep topics organized by making sure they’re categorized properly with relevant tags and product associations. Curating effectively is hard to do without the right tools. So look for a platform that offers a wide range of tools that empower community managers to curate content quickly and effectively. For example, Get Satisfaction provides community managers with: • Powerful moderation tools to edit, fork, merge, archive, and delete conversations, as well as mark their status (such as “answered” or “under consideration”) • The ability to allocate moderation tools to customer champions for extra community support • People management tools for managing and segmenting users in the community and banning or promoting them, as well as limiting their access to specific “private” content categories Bring in Customer-generated Content from Social Networks Your customers are already on Facebook, Twitter, and other social channels, generating questions and responses – but this content still requires one-to-one response and tends to have a very short life (a matter of minutes, in the case of tweets). So as a best practice, deploy tools that allow you to harness this content and bring it into your community. For example, Get Satisfaction offers an out-of-the-box integration with HootSuite to streamline community management and social media management in one dashboard. Once integrated, HootSuite allows you to pull tweets and Facebook Posts into your community, extending their shelf life and giving them SEO power. It also allows you to respond to social support requests with links to relevant community conversations, freeing you from the restrictions of character or platform limitations. To accelerate community building, it also allows you to send content the other way – for example, by inviting your social audience to join the conversation taking place in the community. Peer-to-Peer: Know When to Get Out of the Way Sometimes, when customer questions are raised in your community or in another social channel, you have to step back and let your community members take over. By designating a specific wait period before responding, and even reaching out to specific Champions or custom- ers to see if they’d like to respond, you empower your community members to step up. This gives your com- munity members – especially your more committed, active advocates – a sense of purpose. At the same time, it allows you to get more value from your community. Make Your Community a Campaign Destination Today, most marketers know that content is king. In fact, compelling content is your single biggest driver of in- bound interest. Cutting-edge marketers also realize that if content is king, then engagement is pure gold. Every marketing event or content publication – for example, a webinar or white paper – is an opportunity tool to bring people to your community, where they can discuss the 7 Figure 4: Bring conversations from your social pages into your community to turn them into long-lasting, SEO-friendly resources for future customers to come.
  8. 8. asset at hand and create even more value. Posting this material in your community also gives it an SEO boost. We recommend that you anticipate upcoming events and milestones being managed by other departments and strategize with them on how use your community as a platform for greater engagement. For example, once marketing announces an upcoming webinar, you should also launch a community conversa- tion to solicit questions about it. Participants will be thrilled to engage with speakers before and after the event in a community thread. This strategy will not only drive participation, but it will also give speakers more insight into what they should cover in their presentation and help them create more meaningful connections with participants afterwards. For example, Aerohive, a Get Satisfaction customer and wireless networking company, used their community as a platform to promote thought leadership and attract in- bound interest. They did this by hosting an all-day “Ask the Expert” event in their community. On the day of the event, they worked with an industry expert to field a wide range of customer questions. Unlike a webinar, which requires a replay to get additional value, the community conversations generated during the event became long- lasting assets that continue to receive great organic traffic from search engines as prospects search for information about the new standard. At the same time, Aerohive’s marketing and sales teams can analyze the questions raised by attendees to get new insights about trends, identify customers that need personalized follow-up, and even target prospects for sales campaigns. Monitor, Track, and Analyze Your Community The backbone of a healthy community is analytics that allow a company to see what’s working well, what’s not, and a whole lot more. Armed with insights, community managers can be more intentional and strategic about community management. But what exactly should you be monitoring? And how can you use the insights gained to systematically opti- mize the community experience and the value of your community for your business? Figure 5: Community Health Analytics help you achieve maxi- mum impact with your community. As we’ll explore here, you need sophisticated analyt- ics to better understand customers and trends, make more informed business decisions, and operationalize a customer-centered processes. Understand Community Health Your first priority is to monitor the overall health of your community. The best way to assess this is by tracking key statistics such as total number of visitors, revisits, users, new users, active users, community page views, topic page views, new topics, and new topics with replies. In- dicators of a healthy and thriving community are highly dependent on your overall community strategy (see Part 1 of this Series for more detail: “The Community Effect Part 1: Becoming a Customer Experience Leader”). For instance, a B2B company with a sophisticated lead nur- turing program may want to assess the depth and quality of community conversations, while a B2C that serves millions of customers may be more interested in tracking breadth of engagement. Understand Which Content Is Most Successful It’s important to understand what content is popular and what’s not, as this helps you focus your time and invest- ments in the right areas. For example, you can identify certain types of content that drive conversions and then choose to surface more or less of it, as appropriate. To do this, you’ll want to track metrics such as: 8
  9. 9. • Search trends: This metric allows you to identify top search terms from within your community (versus from the web) to understand what prospects are looking for. • Top searches for specific products: This provides insight into consumer intent about particular products. For example, if you see a lot of support or installation questions for a product, an opportunity exists to increase efficiency by creating an FAQ or online video that answers common questions. • Real-time community trends: Community analytics can help you see trends and uncover issues in real time. For example, you can detect if there is an issue with a particular product before you start getting support tickets and, you buy yourself time to proactively address issues. Understand the Needs and Interests of Community Members You’ll also want to capture data to understand how ef- fectively and efficiently your community works to meet customer needs – especially if you’re using it for customer self-service. This involves capturing data about user behavior, such as what conversations they follow, what content they create, and their overall sentiment. These data points help you understand: • Consumer trends: Analytics can help you better understand interesting trends and generate insights in consumer behavior. Leaderboards are an effective way to understand who your most active and engaged customers are. • Hot topics: Communities are key in helping companies understand what customers care most about — insights that could not be determined by looking at other data sources. For instance, you can see the breakdown of conversations that are getting the most page views. • Sentiment: Having customers self-assess their sentiment helps community managers gauge customer satisfaction and the overall health of their community. Monitor Participation and Cultivate Advocates You’ll also want to monitor participation and identify power users – or advocates – to help build a thriving community. Here are some proven techniques and best practices to get you started: • Identify the people in your community who are most vocal, knowledgeable, and helpful. These are your Champions, and they might be in your branded community or your greater social media and customer community. 9 Figure 6: Asking questions of your community is a great way to build engagement and get to know your customers.
  10. 10. • Reach out to them with questions to encourage engagement between customers. Guidance from a community manager can unlock the goodwill of your best advocates. You just have to ask. • Treat your champions to perks—for example, host them in your office or at an event or give them exclusive access to new products before they launch. Most champions are highly motivated by these non- monetary incentives. Get More Community-based Insights by Integrating with Core Business Systems Consider using your community to track individual cus- tomer behavior as people interact with the rich content that lives in your community – and then share this data with marketing. For example, you can integrate your community platform with: • CRM systems (such as or SugarCRM) – You can sync the data you capture about each customer, such as topic pages viewed, community topics created and replied to, and more – with customer contact data to create a 360-degree view of each customer. • Marketing automation platforms (such as Marketo) – This type of integration helps you track prospect behavior in the community to nurture and score leads and identify buying signals. For companies with a direct sales model, tracking community participation in the lead record also helps sales initiate more valuable sales conversations. Measure the ROI of Your Community Many companies are realizing significant return on investment from their online communities – and the impact can be significant. For example, according to For- rester Research, just a 10% increase in a company’s expe- rience score can result in $1 billion in additional revenue. Executed and managed effectively, communities can help you boost your score. But as a rule, you’ll want to measure metrics that align with your strategic objectives for investing in a community. Areas where businesses are realizing rapid ROI include the following: • Reduced support costs – through ticket deflection, increased peer-to-peer support, and self-service. 10 Figure 7: Integrate community into your web presence for a seamless digital experience.
  11. 11. 11 • Faster and more targeted product innovation – by using the community to beta test products, solicit real-time feedback, and community-source market research. • Revenue generation – by identifying and nurturing qualified sales leads, understanding the content that’s effectively converting prospects, and driving more traffic to these key pages. The value of these ROI areas can be measured by com- paring he metrics captured in community analytics against benchmarked data. For example, if you know that your community has deflected 55% of your support calls, you know that each call costs an average of $15, and you had an average volume of 100 calls a day before implementing community, you can compute that your community is saving you $16,500 a month, or $198,000 a year using the formula below: Other metrics to pay attention to include: • Number of ideas submitted • Most popular ideas (according to community votes) • Number of people participating in community conversations • Peer-to-peer engagement rate • Percentage of community visitors who never post a question to the community (a segment of this number represents people who self-served) • The increase in search engine traffic to pages with community content embedded in them Create a Customer-centered Business It’s one thing to capture the voice of the customer (VOC) through your community. But unless the VOC is going to the right people and changing behaviors and decisions internally, you’re just paying lip service to customer-cen- tricity. The key is making sure that your employees are seeing the right things and responding to them swiftly – and fostering individual accountability for taking action. As a best practice, your community manager should work with the various lines of business to design tailored reports and ensure they are seen by the right people. For example, with the Get Satisfaction platform, you can create word filters and generate reports with information relevant for different teams such as billing, sales, market- ing, and product development. You can also integrate your community with other enterprise software. Consider how integration with a Get Satisfaction community and adds value by driving rich, social, customer engagement in the CRM. With this integration, Get Satisfaction customers can am- plify the value of customer conversations by embedding them in Salesforce as “topic objects,” a perfect addition to the social enterprise to bring the outside-in value of social engagement to the system of record. Users can also take a look at customer-generated content by customer, contact and more, as all customer-generated content and infor- mation is now stored in one place. Stay Tuned! In the final piece of this series, “Tools of the Community Effect,” we’ll share several case studies that explore in detail how Get Satisfaction customers are harnessing the community effect to create thriving, customer-centered businesses. Are You Ready? The decisions you make during the technical build- ing and execution of your community are critical to its long-term success. They determine how easily people can find and create content in your community, how quickly it grows, how much value they find there, how often they come back and contribute, and more. With the right plat- form and strategy, you can embed community through- out your online customer experience – as they conduct product research and make purchase decisions, seek out service and support, and provide post-sales feedback and ideas. In this way, community content can influence consumers at just the right time. You also need to elevate selected customer conversations to your executive team; in this way, you can essentially give customers a seat at the executive table, as community managers can identify and share trends, ideas, and issues that customers care about most. Cost saved per week (Cost per call) * (Number of calls/week) (Percent calls deflected in community) =
  12. 12. Conclusion Providing an outstanding customer experience is really just about prioritizing the customer at each step of their journey with you. Customer communities are uniquely capable of providing this exceptional experi- ence by allowing companies to build mutually beneficial relationships with their customers. Get Satisfaction customers who actively commit and invest in these relationships by way of a community are observing a transformational shift in their business, as they align around customer needs, priorities, and expectations. This is the power of the “Community Effect.” Unleash it to naturally float up above the competition in the eyes of the people who matter most — your customers. Learn More Interested in taking the next step to make your customer service more social? Want to deliver exceptional, differentiating customer experiences with a community platform while also saving costs, enhancing productivity, and increasing revenue? Get Satisfaction enables you to create engaging customer experiences by fostering online conversations about your products and services at every stage of the lifecycle. Companies of all sizes such as Intuit, Kellogg’s, and Sonos rely on the Get Satisfaction community platform to acquire new customers, provide better service and build better products. Contact us for a customized demonstration. (877) 339-3997 12